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FWP to host bear awareness meetings in Chinook, Havre and Zortman

Topics will include safety tips and minimizing conflict

Press release

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks will host a series of public meetings on bear awareness, including how to minimize conflict. The events are open to the public, and area landowners and recreators are encouraged to attend.

• Chinook:

o Saturday, May 18, 3-5 p.m.

o Blaine County Library

o 112 4th St W

• Havre:

o Saturday, May 18, 7-9 p.m.

o Hill County Electric Building

o 2121 US-2

o Hospitality Room

• Zortman:

o Sunday, May 19, 12-2 p.m.

o Zortman BLM fire station

o 1 mile southeast of Zortman on Bear Gulch Road

Much of Montana has both black and grizzly bears. In northcentral Montana, black bears are established in the Little Rockies and Bear Paw Mountains, and grizzlies are showing up further and further east each year. Last month, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks confirmed a grizzly bear sighting in the Bear Paw Mountains east of Big Sandy.

“Though not common, grizzly bear sightings around central Montana have increased over the years,” said FWP Region 6 Supervisor Drew Henry. “This emphasizes the need to practice bear aware behavior.”

At this public meeting, FWP grizzly bear conflict technician Jack Austin will give a presentation on the background of bears in Montana, how the department manages bear conflicts, and the challenges of grizzly expansion on the prairies east of the Rocky Mountain Front.

In addition, Austin will explain what to do during a bear encounter, how to safely deter a bear using non-lethal tools and how to secure attractants and prevent a bear from being drawn into agricultural operations and residences.

If you see a grizzly bear near your residence in central or north central Montana, please report the activity as soon as possible to Wesley Sarmento at 406-450-1097, Chad White at 406-788-4755, or your local FWP office.

FWP ensures that its meetings are fully accessible to persons with disabilities. To request special accommodations for this meeting or for more information, please call 406-228-3700.


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